Avian researcher is next guest speaker

Leader News Staff
news@ptleader.com
Posted 11/11/22

Avian ecologist and conservation biologist Peter Hodum will be the featured speaker at “The Future of Oceans” lecture at 3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 20, at The Chapel at Fort Worden State …

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Avian researcher is next guest speaker

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Avian ecologist and conservation biologist Peter Hodum will be the featured speaker at “The Future of Oceans” lecture at 3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 20, at The Chapel at Fort Worden State Park.

The ocean series is presented by the Port Townsend Marine Science Center.

Hodum will give the talk, “Of puffins and petrels: Conserving seabirds of the Salish Sea and Outer Coast of Washington.” His presentation will recount collaborative research that’s focused on improving the understanding of the ecology and conservation status of species such as the Tufted Puffin, Rhinoceros Auklet, Cassin’s Auklet, and Leach’s and Fork-tailed Storm-Petrels.

“Although Washington is blessed with a rich community of breeding and wintering seabirds, relatively little is known about the ecology and conservation status of many of the species,” Hodum said. “This relative lack of knowledge extends to iconic species such as the Tufted Puffin, a species listed as endangered by Washington state.”

Hodum is a biology professor and the Director of Environmental Policy and Decision Making at the University of Puget Sound. He is particularly interested in conservation-based research, including the impacts of anthropogenic threats such as marine plastic debris, habitat alteration and loss, introduced species, and fisheries interactions on bird populations and island ecosystems. 

In the Pacific Northwest, Hodum studies the ecology, population dynamics, and conservation status of burrowing seabirds, principally Rhinoceros Auklets and Tufted Puffins. 

Since its inception in 2014, the Port Townsend Marine Science Center’s “Future of Oceans” lecture series has explored the frontiers of ocean research and emerging technologies while confronting the human capacity to understand and sustain healthy oceans. Each year attendees are challenged and informed with thought-provoking presentations. The series is made possible by the support of the Darrow family.

There is no charge to attend, though donations are welcome.

For more information about the lecture series, go to ptmsc.org.

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